Dian Wellfare Adoption Rights Campaigner (1951-2008)

"A Sanctioned Evil" Part One

Overview of Adoption
"A Sanctioned Evil" Adoption History in Australia
"A Sanctioned Evil" 2
"A Sanctioned Evil" 3
"A Sanctioned Evil" 4
"A Sanctioned Evil" 5
A Sanctioned Evil 6
Dian's Tribute Page
Civil Rights Crimes in Adoption
Wake up Little Suzie
Beyond Pain
Responses to the NSW Inquiry
A Judge Speaks
What they Knew
South Australian Vetos
Dian's Portrait at National Gallery
Origins INC NSW
Origins Submission to NSW Parliamentary Inquiry Into Adoption Practices 1998
Written and researched by Dian Wellfare


A Sanctioned Evil

by Dian Wellfare



The premeditated interference in the

biological sequence of birth between

mother and child for the benefit of

others is a crime against humanity.By Dian Wellfare




This submission will focus on the adoption worker's responsibility toward theunwed and unsupported mother regarding the possible adoption of her child

since the early 1950's and prior, how she was to personally request that adoption papers be brought to her, how she was to be advised of financial assistance and alternatives that might enable her to keep her child, how she was to be warned of the risk of dire future regret and the potential psychological harm that such a course of action may cause her, and how only when she insisted upon the surrender of her child was an adoption to proceed. It will explain why this did not occur, and how her human and legal rights have been entirely contravened.


Breaking the Laws of

 Man and Nature

Twenty four years too late, but as soon as my mind allowed me to confront the loss of my child, I went in search of my legal rights, and in doing so, found that as a sixteen year old mother in 1968, not only did I have the legal right to keep my own baby after all, but that in their rapacious quest for newborns, the adoption industry rather forgot the law - in having introduced hospital practices and counseling procedures that contravened not only their own manuals of adoption practice since the early 1950's, but also the protection clauses of the Adoption of Children Act of 1965, in their entirety.


Based on supply and demand, the adoption of newborns, under the guise of   Christian morality, relied on perverting the principles of nature, or God's Master Plan, in using unwed mothers as breeders, believing they were devoid of human maternal instincts and emotions, giving rise to the diabolical concept that total strangers (eventually guaranteed a waiting period of usually no longer than 12 months for a newborn), were entitled to create their families by placing orders for and claiming an already developing foetus, or one yet to be conceived - as their own. 


An unspeakable grief


So permanently traumatized by such unspeakable inhumanity against them, and being then accused of having given away their own babies, the young mothers themselves were unable to give voice to their horror. Even those who did try to speak out during the 1960's-70's and 80's, were conveniently dismissed (silenced) by both the adoption industry and the courts themselves. Thus the public remained unaware of the workings of this wicked system until recent years.


I intend to refute the myth that adoption was ever "in the best interest of the child", by explaining how both the law and true meaning of the term has been deviously misrepresented with malicious intent, to be used as the key to the smooth functioning of what began as a monstrous (but illicit) social cleansing campaign that ran away with itself, and came to be seen as "a wonderful community service" for childless couples.   


And finally, although this paper focuses on adoption practices within New South Wales, every state in Australia followed similar adoption procedures, although dates may differ from state to state.


The Adoption Act refers to the Adoption of Children Act 1965.




        Any reference material used in this submission

        pertaining to either adoptee’s or to adopted parents

        has been included to show the gross level of neglect,

        breach of duty of care, and blatant disregard adoption

        professionals have shown toward the known damage their

        industry has created in their promotion of and

        idealization of  traditional adoption.


        In promoting the myth upon which traditional adoption

        has been based the adoption industry ignored the

        child's needs as being of paramount importance. It

        instead, fed upon and accommodated the problems

        associated with infertility to generate and promote

        their own profession, rather than assisting their

        client to deal with and come to terms with the

        emotional aspects of their infertility.


        Most reference material used in this submission has

        been found within the social work section of both

        the Fisher Library, and the Bosch Library of Sydney

        University. As there was no Australian literature on

        adoption prior to the early 1970's, with Australia

        relying on material collected from both the United

        States and the United Kingdom for their practice, all

        international literature used is therefore relevant to

        this inquiry.


What they knew - but ignored

The Psychology of the Adopted Child


The National Committee for Mental Health

Journal on Mental Hygiene. New York,

by Florence Clothier M.D.,1943


 `The child who does not grow up with his own biological parents, or does not even know them or anyone of his own blood, is an individual who has lost the  thread of family continuity. A deep identification with our forebears, as  experienced originally in the mother-child relationship, gives us our most  fundamental security. The child's repeated discoveries that the mother from  whom he has been biologically separated will continue to warm him, nourish  him, and protect him pours into the very structure of his personality a  stability and a reassurance that he is safe, even in this new alien world.


 Every adopted child, at some time in his development, has been deprived of this primitive relationship with his mother. This trauma and the severing of  the individual from  his racial antecedents lie at the core of what is peculiar  to the psychology of the adopted child.


The adopted child presents all the complications in social and emotional developments seen in the own child. But  the ego of the adopted child, in addition to all the normal demands made upon  it, is called upon to compensate for the wound left by the loss of the  biological mother. Later on this appears as an unknown void, separating the  adopted child from his fellows whose blood ties bind them to the past as well as to the future.


It is pertinent never to lose sight of the fact that no matter how lost to him his natural parents may be, the adopted child carries stamped in every cell of his body genes derived from his forebears. The primitive stuff of which he is finallyat the time of his conception...


The implications of this for the psychology of the adopted child are of the utmost significance.


The child who is placed with adoptive parents at or soon after birth misses   the mutual and deeply satisfying mother-child relationship, the roots of  which lie in that deep area of the personality  where the physiological and psychological are merged. Both for the child and for the natural mother, that period is part of a biological sequence, and it is to be doubted whether the relationship to it's post-partum mother, in it's subtler effects, can be replaced by even the best of substitute mothers.


But those subtle effects lie so deeply buried in the personality that, in light of our present knowledge, we cannot evaluate them. We do know more about the trauma that an older baby suffers when he is separated from his mother, with whom his relationship is no longer merely parasitic, but toward whomhe has developed active social strivings.


For some children, and in some stages of development, this severing of the budding social relationship can cause irreparable harm.


The child's willingness to sacrifice instinctive gratifications and infantile pleasures for the sake of love relationships has proved a bitter disillusionment, and he may be loath to give himself into a love relationship again.'


The Adoption of Newborns.

Professional neglect - or child abuse?


      Clothier continued: `We also have reason to believe that if an adoptive placement is made in earliest infancy with parents who accept and love the child, there is a maximum probability that the child's emotional and social development will parallel that of the own child, even though the adopted child has to forego infancy's first and greatest protection from tension.


The child who is placed in infancy has the opportunity of passing through his Oedipal development in relationship to his adoptive parents without an interruption that, in the child's phantasy, may amount to the most severe of punishments.'


Having acknowledged their inability to evaluate the trauma in severing the biological connection between a mother and child at birth, in 1943, `in light of their present knowledge', failed to inspire any research into the trauma, and so the subsequent emotional wellbeing and future development of millions of adopted infants world-wide, has relied entirely upon wishful thinking.


Mental health experts around the world then spent the next fifty years conducting major research, and thousands of psychiatric case studies into the social dysfunction of the adopted child, trying to find explanations for the emotional complications causing adopted children to be over-represented in mental health facilities and clinics around the world.


They blamed `bad blood', genetic pre-dispositions in the deviant mother, bad pre-natal care, difficult births, hereditary factors, neurotic adopters, that adoptive parents were more inclined to send the child to psychiatric facilities, bad parenting, separation from foster parents, genealogical bewilderment, attention deficit disorders, personality disorders, schizophrenia, etc. etc. And although much research has been conducted into the harmful effects of separating an animal from it's mother at birth, never once has the trauma caused by the interference of the biological sequence of birth between a human mother and child even been considered let alone researched.


However, according to Florence Clothier - the trauma suffered by an infant  separated from his mother at birth has always been known. It is the degree of that trauma which remains unknown because it has suited the fabric of society to avoided and ignore it.


Adoption practice works on the premise

that in order to save  the child - you

must first destroy it's mother 


Dian Wellfare


 Taking babies from their mothers at birth and hiding them forever was an internationally contrived social cleansing programme, deemed to be-"in the interest of the community".

Dian Wellfare


Social Cleansing


Just as Hitler began his own social cleansing campaign by first sterilizing anyone considered to be social misfits (a trend he had followed from the Eugenics Institute of Virginia USA), so too did Australia follow a social cleansing campaign based on a yet another predicted trend, and yet another form of social control emanating from the USA. This time the plan was to control illegitimacy by eradicating unwed mothers from society through the promotion of a myth. This myth was created to provide a market demand for the illegitimate babies of their young illegitimate mothers.


Not to be confused with the adoption of children who really were in need - the myth was traditional adoption. ie: the transfer of a newborn infant from it's own mother at birth to be used as an emotional cure for the infertility of another.


The Emperor’s New Clothes


Based as it is on a legally sanctioned lie, in creating a new identity for a child by sealing away forever his original birth certificate, and replacing it with an amended one to imply that an adopting parent gave birth to the child - and with adoption promoters dressing it up to allow for the emotional pretence of believing the child was just’ as if born’ to the adopting couple, the state found it could transfer its own community  responsibilities of  financially caring for unsupported families in need, onto the adopting parents.


Effectively paralleling the mythical tale of the Emperors New Clothes - although adoption was originally nothing more than foster care made permanent through a legal transaction  - adoption came to be seen as something other than it was. 


A Market is Born


According to historical research trends: prior to World War 2, illegitimacy was considered to be the consequence of mental deficiency, immorality, bad companions, poverty, and broken homes. ie. no-one wanted a child of `bad blood' born to a socially deviant mother, not to mention that the country was in the middle of the great depression when no-one could afford another mouth to feed, so adoption was not a highly marketable proposition.


The post war period, however, introduced social planners such as Leontine Young, who saw a predominance of psychological and psychiatric disturbances as explanations for illegitimacy, where the child needed to be `saved' from it's neurotic mother.


Add to that a growing awareness that an epidemic of Clamydia and backyard abortions  had swept the country during the post war period, causing an acute infertility problem: and the mid and late 1950's witnessed a growing acceptance, a convenient revelation, that unwed mothers came from all walks of life after all. The `bad blood' theory was then debunked with the nature vs. nurture debate and a market demand for illegitimate babies had been born.


The same Leontine Young who less than a decade earlier in the mid 194O's had labeled the unmarried mother as disturbed, neurotic and needed to get pregnant to give her mother a gift, (with her child needing to be saved from her), had already begun reconsidering her concepts  by 1953  when she presented a paper to the National Conference for Social Workers in Cleveland, expressing her concerns about:


 ...the tendency growing out of the demand for babies to regard

 unmarried mothers as breeding machines (by people intent) on

 securing babies for quick adoption."


By 1965, Young's theories had been ridiculed through analysis conducted by Rael Jean Isaac and legal Consultant Joseph Spencer, and others, but it had suited the adoption industry's purpose to perpetuate the myth of the unmarried mother being psychologically disturbed for a further thirty years and avoid any further research into her mental health.


A Clean Slate


Eventually unwilling to take older children, with everyone demanding only perfect newborns with a "clean slate", by the early 1960's - a more streamlined procedure was being engineered to kill two birds with one stone -to control illegitimacy(1)  by using the babies of unwed mothers as a cure for infertility(2). But it meant having to promote adoption as being in the best interest of the child to meet social approval. It also relied upon introducing the  term  unwanted child to allow society to believe they were saving the child, and of course disregarding all legal regulations and protection clauses in relation to the treatment of unwed mothers in order to fill the orders placed for newborns.


An Odd Phenomenon,


Questioning why the peak adoption period evolved at a time when major social reform was occurring, the Vietnam war was in full swing, make love not war was the catch cry of the day, the pill allowed for greater sexual freedom for many, the illegitimacy rate had  ( according to newspaper articles of the time) remained constant and stable, and yet, the more rigid and punitive decades prior to the 1960's and 1970's witnessed a greater percentage of single mothers keeping their babies within the family home.....I questioned why this unnatural and socially misplaced  phenomenon occurred.


After spending years searching for and scouring old archival Government and agency literature and other related documents, needing to unravel how a civilized and progressive society could become even more punitive in their attitudes and introduce such  cruelty as separating babies from their mothers at birth, I came upon what I believe was the catalyst  which allowed  such inhumanity to occur.


A Social Forecast

- The Baby Boomers -


It was a paper written by Dr. Clark E. Vincent, Professor of Sociology presented on 26th May 1964 at the Colonel Ruth Pagan Memorial Meeting, sponsored by the Child Welfare of Los Angeles, National Association on Services to Unmarried Parents, Florence Crittendon Association of America, National Urban League, and the Salvation Army, for a National Conference on Social Welfare.


Dr Vincent, a prognosticator of social forecasts, had outlined his prediction in his paper titled `Illegitimacy in the Next Decade: Trends and Implications', that as a result of the post war baby boom, a huge pool of teenage mothers born during the period between 1952 and 1957 would create a potential over-supply of illegitimate babies as they reached the 15 to 19 year old age group ,“the greatest suppliers of adoptable babies”,  by 1970, and  - add to that an under-supply of potential adopters caused by the low birth rate during the period between 1930 - 1940 .... and by 1970 (he had predicted), a major social problem regarding the over supply of illegitimate babies would result.


Until his projected forecast (since the post war period)  there had always been more couples wanting to adopt babies than were ever available, and although illegitimacy had always been a fact of life, the concern was that by 1970, the tables would turn and there would not be enough couples willing to adopt from the anticipated huge pool of babies that would become available. This would create a major economic and social imbalance in the acceptable levels of illegitimacy in the community - unless the period surrounding  1065-1970 could be socially controlled.


The `Crisis'


From the introduction to the Adoption of Children Act 1965, proclaimed in 1967 and until 1973 (when the illegitimacy `crisis' predicted by Vincent back in 1964 had supposedly passed), no mention had been made of provisions and services available to enable the unwed mother to make any real choice. Even though district officers and the Minister for Child Welfare had clearly outlined the mothers rights to a concerned public in 1965, and in Parliament, during debate over the new Act two years prior to it's being proclaimed, th emother  was never advised of her  legal options.. This became a world-wide strategy also  implemmted by the United Kingdom, the United States,  and New Zealand..


This submission will explain the engineering process that brought the plan to fruition, including the process by which the adoption of newborns would be promoted to a  previously resistant community in their quest to recruit the many additional prospective adoptive parents needed to make the plan work.


On a personal note: I have come to understand how it had been pre-determined by Vincent’s forecast in 1964 (four years before he was conceived), that I should lose my child at birth.


Cross Cultural Data Collection


Vincent had also explained how Federal Governments had already begun providing funds for research and demonstration projects dealing specifically with illegitimacy and related problems during the late 1950's and early 1960's, and estimated how, by 1965-1970, more attention would be given to international and cross cultural comparative data, reticent interest in unwed fathers, and that longitudinal studies into illicit sexual activities were already being accompanied, if not exceeded by, the increased research interest in highly selected aspects of illegitimacy ie. adoption.


These developments and the push toward coordinated services were intended to understand illegitimacy and to diminish its occurrence, through education, research, and preventative and rehabilitative services and activities. And although he was only three years out, he had also forecast how the illegitimacy levels would eventually be controlled by 1970 through the introduction of easy access to terminations and the availability of contraception to unmarried women. His forecasts have all came to pass.


Vincent’s predictions were  the underlying reason why Governments of all English speaking nations, including Australia, took over control of all adoptions, and therefore illegitimacy, (unlike war ravaged populations in Europe where adoption was not a promotable issue) with the implementation of the Adoption of Children Act 1965.


Disregarding their own legislation, regulations and responsibility toward the psychological well being and legal protection of the unwed mother and her child, by avoiding its responsibility to provide previously available financial support and other provisions that might  allow the mother  the freedom of choice , the state could  effectively cull the illegitimacy rate to  a more acceptable level.



Forecast No 2.

Supply and Demand = Punishment


Three years earlier than his above mentioned prediction: according to his highly referenced book titled "Unmarried Mothers" based on research conducted into mothers who kept and mothers who gave up their babies, in 1961 Clark Vincent had explained the propaganda on which the new Adoption of Children Act 1965 would eventually become based. He forecast how the term "in the best interest of the child" would become the tool used to pry newborns away from their own mothers at birth to supply the demand. Vincent's summary concludes (in part) with the prediction that:


     "If the demand for adoptable babies continues to exceed the supply...

      then it is quite possible that, in the near future, unwed mothers

      will be "punished" by having their children taken from them right

      after birth." He explains that:


     "A policy like this would not be executed - nor labelled explicitly

      as "punishment". Rather, it would be implemented by such pressures

      and labels as:


      1. scientific findings

      2. the best interest of the child

      3. rehabilitation of the unwed mother

      4. and the stability of family and society."


Although he prefaced his research by adding the following disclaimer :


   "We must emphasize that the present study concerned "white, maternity-

    home" unwed mothers.....We must also emphasize the fact that this study

    was made in a location where, and at a time when, a demand for "white"

    adoptable infants existed.  The data have little application to Negro unwed

    mothers, who have very few adoption outlets for their children; they may

    be as little  applicable to the white unwed mothers of another historical time,

    one during which there is no demand for adoptable infants. If the demand

    were absent, the unwed mothers who now score high in personality score

    measuring e.g., socialization, maturity, and responsibility, might very

    possibly be more inclined to assume the responsibility of rearing their

    illegitimate children.


    We consider that the probability that such policy and practice will emerge

    necessitates precautions to prevent the misapplication of group data to

    individuals. It would be most unfortunate if such group data were      

    interpreted or misused to claim that any individual unwed mother desiring

    to keep her child is "ipso-facto" an inadequate mother and a disturbed


    Such misapplication or misuse of data would do grave injustice to those

    individual unwed mothers having the desire and the ability (latent or

    manifest) to be very good mothers to their children, and who may

    subsequently establish homes with fathers for these children."


Network Preparations


Referenced by Mary Mclelland in her presentation at the Precedings of a Seminar held on Friday 3rd February 1967 to proclaim The Adoption of Children Act 1965 in N.S.W, Vincent’s predictions were endorsed, albeit unofficially (so as not to have to waste time getting it passed through legislation, I suspect) and the above four factors, or excuses for breaking the law, became the official cornerstones upon which the new Adoption of Children Act 1965 was promoted.


Although Vincent had let his (socially engineered) cat out of the bag in 1961,

it took a further 5 years to engineer and perfect a networking arrangement between 314 various departments and agencies within NSW, to implement his 'predictions' thus ensuring the successful functioning of their new social cleansing campaign.


Until these practices were implemented, there were never enough adoptable babies to meet the demand. But once introduced the period between 1967 -1973 became proudly referred to in social work circles as the 'bumper adoption era', having effectively reaped enough newborns to beat the `crisis' and supply the demand. In fact so much so that by 1972 the supply had, for the first time, exceeded the demand, leaving hundreds of infants languishing in institutions, having become too old for adoption. Being no longer newborns and growing older by the day, their desirability was no longer so marketable. The following year the Sole Parents benefit was advertised - which I think speaks for itself



Definitions and Misrepresentations

Definition of Adoption

"To take as one's own"


Adoption: a permanent form of foster care sanctioned in law.

Introduced originally to care for children in need, deprived of their

own families.


Its greatest benefit on a state level was to save the public purse with the expectation that 90% of illegitimate children would be adopted.



Definition in law of:

"As if born to you"


 A legal definition to explain that an adopted child would have the same right of inheritance from their adoptive parental estate as if born naturally, and  that adopting parents would have the same parental rights and obligations to the child as those of natural parents.


Misrepresentation of

`as if born to you'

          Adoption is a cure for infertility.


        The adoption workers main concern was based on the premise that

        the emotional distress caused by infertility and childlessness

        within marriage could be alleviated by providing an infant young 

        enough to just `as if born' to the adopting couple.





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